Talk:Image of God

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The same concept in Islam[edit]

This concept is affirmed by the Prophet of Islam in his sayings(hadith) which I included it in references, however there is not much emphasize as a central theme in Islamic theology.rinduzahid(talk) 15:17, 18 October 2012 (UTC)

Jesus as Image of the Father[edit]

The article should maybe mention the NT quote that says that who has seen the Son has also seen the Father. (talk) —Preceding undated comment was added at 11:46, 28 December 2008 (UTC).

Except for the fact that is referring to the fact that the Son and the Father are one and the same. Not that they physically appear the same. (talk) 19:00, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

I think this doesn't coincide with wikipedia's standards as it at no point on the page discusses the fact that all of this is abrahemic mythology. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:11, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

Can it mean God is embodied?[edit]

I have found more than a few instances of belief that this phrase is referring to our physical substance: that is God has a physical body that ours is modeled off of. Quoted in support of this notion is Exodus 33 verses 18 on wherein Noah asked to view God's glory, and God told Noah, he cannot see his face and live, but he would pass by him, covering Noah's face until he passed, enabling him to see the back of God.

Is this completely fringe idea or what? Growing up in the church, I never heard of such a thing: the idea of "made in the image of God" always referred to our souls, not our bodies. I would have thought it nonsense until I came across it on the internet. Since I don't see the idea listed in the article, is this a correct assumption? Is there any scholar, reputable or no, that has proposed such a thing? Or is it just some sort of misunderstanding by a few? Auntie E. (talk) 21:05, 24 April 2010 (UTC)

As an amateur fan of theology, I've heard that theory once. (My understanding is that any physical appearances of God/Jesus in the Old Testament were truly physical and yet not natural.) I have heard there is one religion that believes this that calls itself Christian but is not accepted by Evangelicals or Protestants, but I'm not certain which one. If God is made of atoms, then He would be subject to the laws governing atoms and collections of atoms, such as entropy.
As far as I know, the Image of God is the moral ability of humans which is not shared by animals. We make laws, and use the rules of evidence to determine if people have broken them, and a jury of their peers listens to two sides of an argument, then through reason declares them guilty or not. Although dolphins war against porpoises and ravens solve problems and apes shun outsiders and different packs of orcas have different cultures, none of them is capable of producing a moral thesis as far as we can tell, or understanding the difference between "good and bad" and "right and wrong". BlueNight (talk) 19:34, 1 November 2010 (UTC)

Irenaeus and Origen: "Medieval theologians"???[edit]

The only reason I didn't simply remove the mention of the two 2nd-3rd century theologians as "medieval" is that it appears to be a reference, and if the reference itself is what is wrong (rather than this being a typo or other error), then the whole statement should be removed. Thoughts?

"Medieval theologians, i.e., Origen and Irenaeus, made a distinction between the image and likeness of God. The former referred to as natural, innate resemblance to God and the latter referred to the moral attributes (God’s attributes) that were lost in the fall.[5]" MikeND05 (talk) 04:59, 27 April 2010 (UTC)


This article is not neutral. It does not mention that the doctrine is only an opinion and not fact. It does not mention which religions believe it and which do not. It does not provide arguments for and against the belief. It needs non-Christian input. Also, the first section is very confusing; I have no idea what it's on about. McLerristarr (Mclay1) (talk) 10:30, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

The lede says that the Image of God "is a concept and theological doctrine that asserts" something, it doesn't say "XIANITY IS TRU, OMG!" The words "concept" and "doctrine" are not synonymous with "fact." We don't need to point out "this is opinion, not proven fact" in this article any more than we do in the articles determinism, objectivism, or fideism. While Christians probably have done the most writing about the Imago Dei (since they figure that God and humanity are pretty similar), there probably is some Jewish and Muslim stuff out there that could be used in the article. Ian.thomson (talk) 13:44, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

This page is biased. The simplest explanation of the "made in the image of God" phrase, missing from this page, is to understand the word "image" by it's common meaning, that is a physical likeness or representation of a person, animal, or thing. On this basis the phrase refers to the common ancient belief that the creator/gods created humans to resemble his/her own physical appearence ergo the creator's appearence resembles humans. This is indicated by the depiction of god's in human forms from Zeus to Jehovah. Why is this anthropomorphist explanation missing from this page?Mccoist355 (talk) 08:37, 18 August 2010 (UTC)

Please see our guidelines about your personal opinion about subjects. Your "simplest explanation" is just your opinion, doesn't consider that the Logos and the Holy Spirit (central ideas in Christianity) aren't anthropomorphic, and is ignorant of the negative theology. Outside of Mormonism, any exegesis of the Christian scriptures will go with "mental/spiritual image," not physical image. You being ignorant of the subject and having a history of railing against Christianity in articles without actually understanding the neutral point of view guideliens are not bias on the part of the article. This article has sources, your opinion does not. Ian.thomson (talk) 12:43, 18 August 2010 (UTC)
The problem is, any sources on this are also POV. We need a source about the doctrine that is written by someone who doesn't think it's true. That way it is a purely academic study of the doctrine, not a religious opinion. McLerristarr | Mclay1 13:14, 18 August 2010 (UTC)
Facepalm - That's not in WP:NPOV. WP:NPOV says "Factually attribute the opinion in the text to a person, organization, group of persons, or percentage of persons, and state as fact that they have this opinion, citing a reliable source." - The article says "Christians believe this," and cites sources that show that, gee, Christians do believe that. It's honestly bigotted to say that we can't cite Christian authors for an article about something in Christian theology. Are we going to only allow people who believe in a deity or deities to edit the article Atheism? What's next, Jews have to wear yellow star badges so we know when they try to edit the articles Kosher, Seder, or Aggadah? Ian.thomson (talk) 13:34, 18 August 2010 (UTC)
Not quite what I meant... McLerristarr | Mclay1 07:52, 19 August 2010 (UTC)


Might be good if someone could write up a section on Jung's work with the concept of Imago Dei as it is a well-known concept in psychoanalysis.Henitsirk (talk) 19:54, 26 September 2010 (UTC)

yessss 03:30, 4 April 2013 (UTC)03:30, 4 April 2013 (UTC)~ — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Islamic Tradition[edit]

This exists in Islamic scripture and theology as well, both in the Qurʾanic interpretation and in the hadith more directly, and was especially heavily invoked and explored by Sufis such as Ibn al-Arabi. An easy source to cite would be S. H. Nasr, if someone wants to add it. Note he, as well as many other Muslims and Islamic Studies scholars, has translated the original Arabic term "surat," which can mean image, as "form" instead, in order to avoid the ambiguity that arises from the term "image," which has already caused dispute on this talk page in the context of Christianity. Here is a possible source:

"The creation of human beings complements the creation of the cosmos and adds to the created order a central being who is God's vicegerent, capable of knowing all things, of dominating the earth, given the power to do good, but also to wreak havoc and, in fact, corrupt the earth. According to a famous hadith, "God created man upon His form," although here form does not mean physical image, but rather the reflection of God's Names and Qualities" (Nasr, Seyyed Hossein. The Heart of Islam. Harper Colins. New York, NY. 2004: p. 15)

--Sawyer207 (talk) 02:54, 27 April 2012 (UTC)

Post Biblical?[edit]

The New Testament is certainly not post-biblical, and most Christians would disagree that Wisdom of Solomon and and Ben Sirach are extra-biblical, let alone post-biblical.

Another reference to Image of God[edit]

The synoptic Gospels all refer to a story about paying taxes. In that story Jesus points out that Caesar's image is on the coin and then he says to give to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's. This seems pointedly based on the understanding that, as the coin is created in Caesar's image, we are created in God's image. That is, the part of the story where it is pointed out that the coin bears Caesar's image, followed immediately by the other statement, raises the rhetorical question "What then is made in God's image?" in order to carry through on the analogy. The idea that a coin belongs to Caesar because it bears Caesar's image otherwise just doesn't seem strong enough to be convincing. I suppose that this might be obscure enough not to mention it in the text, but it makes me think it might be a stretch to assert with confidence that there are "only two" places where the New Testament speaks of human creation in God's image.Mazzula (talk) 22:25, 29 June 2014 (UTC)

Imago Dei and Human Rights[edit]

In editing this section, I'd like to add more philosophers/sources to this discussion other than John Locke.

Ideas include: David Hume, Stoics, The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (United Nations)

Any other ideas? Jurgen Moltmann[1] --Craftyserpent (talk) 18:58, 15 October 2014 (UTC), Bonhoeffer maybe? (Regan has a section where she talks about his interpretation of Imago Dei as freedom [2]

We would have to draw the connection to Imago Dei specifically, but I think the connection is definitely there between at least these three. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Craftyserpent (talkcontribs) 18:49, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

Jurgen Moltmann would definitely be appropriate to add since there's a source that explicitly connects Imago Dei to his thinking. The others would need sources that explicitly link the Imago Dei to those ideas, as we do not use original research. Ian.thomson (talk) 19:00, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

Ethna Regan's book Theology and the Boundary Discourse of Human Rights is a great source that I'm using to explore this Craftyserpent (talk) 19:19, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^ Ratnaraj, Billa (2003). The Significance of the Concept of Imago Dei for a Theology of Human Rights in the Writings of Jürgen Moltmann. Calcutta: Serampore College. 
  2. ^ Regan, Ethna (2010). Theology and the Boundary Discourse of Human Rights. Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press. p. 71. ISBN 1589016580.